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RENEWABLE LAB
Art and Science Symposium on Renewable Energy Technologies
July 26 – 28, 2012
In Pedvale Open-Air Art Museum and Salinas farm, Kurzeme region, Latvia

RENEWABLE LAB is a 3-day symposium that will take place from July 26 to July 28 in ‘rural lab’ settings of North-East Latvia. The symposium aims at exploring the potential of art and science collaboration in the quest for a sustainable future. The symposium will gather together artists and scientists who will introduce with their artistic explorations and scientific research in the field of renewable energy technologies. The participants will discuss how these two perspectives can be combined in order to develop new ideas for collaborative projects.


Areal view of Salinas farm in Virbi/Jaunpagasts, Talsi Municipality, Kurzeme region, Latvia.

The “Renewable Lab” symposium will include several workshops conducted by artists and scientists who will be experimenting with new generation bio-technologies, showing how to build hydrophonic systems for urban/rural gardening, as well as building “electrosmog” harvesting devices, DIY solar cells, and working with other renewable energy technologies.

The symposium will feature talks by scientists from Hydrogen Lab, Institute of Solid State Physics and Faculty of Biology at University of Latvia, who will be demonstrating and testing their hydrogen cars, bio-electricity generation systems and other renewable energy developments. It will also include presentations by artists from RIXC and Renewable Network, as well as contributions by other participants.

In addition, the symposium will feature specific event – collaborative working session “Biotricity” during which artists and scientists will investigate the ‘next-generation’ biotechnology (called MFC – microbial fuel cells) and how it can be approached and interpreted through artistic perspective and cultural innovation. MFC technology is based on a bio-electrochemical system that converts chemical energy to electrical energy by using microorganisms – bacteria found in the commonly available resource such as, for instance, wastewater. “Biotricity” is a research project by RIXC, which is carried out in the framework of Studiolab project. During “Biotricity” working session the participants will be involved in building bio-electricity generators outdoors – in pool water and soil, and will be experimenting with sonification and visualization aesthetics of MCF technology.

* Locations:
2-days of the symposium will take place in Pedvale Open-Air Art Museum, and the 3rd day – in Salinas farm (and on the road in-between Pedvale and Salinas, testing hydrogen car).


Hydrogen Mobile car (karting) built in Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia. Image source: CO2 E – Race homepage.

* Call for participants:
We welcome applications by artists and scientists who are interested to participate in the symposium (either by sharing their experience and knowledge – giving a talk, proposing a workshop, etc. or by attending workshops conducted by other symposium participants).

Please send a short letter of intent / motivation, and your short biography to the e-mail address:
rasa [at] rixc.lv

* DEADLINE:
for submitting proposals: July 9, 2012
(notification: July 10, 2012)

* Participation costs:
There are no participation fees.
We have limited possibilities to provide participants with travel and accommodation costs (we can cover these costs for 3 persons from Baltic/Nordic and Eastern European countries). Other participants will have take care about traveling to Latvia (Riga) by themselves. We will provide transportation from Riga to Pedvale.
Accommodation in Pedvale costs 20 EUR per night.

* Organizers:
The symposium is organized by artists and producers from RIXC (Riga), in collaboration with scientists from Institute of Solid State Physics / University of Latvia.

* Coordinators and contact persons:
Rasa Smite and Raitis Smits / RIXC: rasa@rixc.lv, raitis@rixc.lv

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* Framework and support:
The “Renewable Lab” programme takes place in the framework of the European cooperation project “Techno-Ecologies. Other Approaches to Cultural, Social and Ecological Sustainability” supported by EC Culture Programme 2007–2013 and implemented by RIXC and partners: Baltan Laboratories (NL), ARS LONGA (FR), the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts (FI), the Finnish Society of Bioart (FI), Liepaja University (LV), Napon – Institute for Flexible Cultures and Technologies (RS), the Vilnius Academy of Arts (LT).

The symposium is also supported by the State Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.

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by Rasa / RIXC

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